In the Year of Our Lord 2020, a diffuse understanding of what constitutes “media” has increasingly flooded the world with easily consumable content—Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Video, Disney+, and others create and distribute online television and movies, while the traditional Hollywood studio system works frantically to keep pace with its nimble digital competitors. Alongside cable television, this triumvirate of mainstream content-makers contends with the proliferation of media that has arisen in recent years—podcasts, fringe websites, talk radio, YouTube, social media. With a camera and microphone nestled neatly in your pocket, one can create, edit, and distribute content of any kind with ease—and the cultural impact, like the technology that enables it, is rapidly evolving.
Mental health is just as important as physical health, as many people have recently begun to realize. In addition to this newfound understanding, many people are beginning to realize just how prevalent mental illness is in the population. Despite this, the issue of stigmatization is a big one that still surrounds mental health and mental illness issues.
I don’t think anyone is able to put into words exactly how they feel, because they’ve never felt exactly this way before. But I’m going to do my best. Because I have to.
Recently, a phenomenon has emerged where the phrase and concept “mental health” has become a popular method to gain clout for both celebrities and wannabe celebrities. As society has become a slightly more accepting place for people struggling with their mental health, rappers and singers, as well as TV and film, have tried to use this heightened societal focus for clout.
Those of you who know me are probably aware of the fact that I’m a massive Batman fan. I grew up watching the animated series, dressing up, and reading stories about Batman. So naturally one of my favorite villains, if not my favorite, has been the Joker. Completely devoid of morality or any sense of human decency, the Joker causes chaos and mayhem wherever he goes, pissing off Batman and driving him ever closer to the edge. One of the reasons I think the Joker makes such a good villain is that he has no redeeming qualities whatsoever. He is just this being of pure evil that has no regard for any of his actions and how they affect people.
Initially, 13 Reasons Why was praised for bringing attention to issues of mental health among adolescents. The show was characterized as “daring” for addressing such a controversial and complicated subject. However, many mental health professionals have criticized the show for misrepresenting depression and suicide. While there are certainly come aspects of the show that beneficially portray issues of mental health, as a whole, it fails in this respect.
When I was in middle school, my family’s favorite show to watch was Monk. A crime procedural show about a detective with OCD, Monk always delivered a gripping mystery mixed perfectly with humor (often at the expense of Adrian Monk, the detective.) I still love this show, and for years after those cowards at Netflix removed it from their service, I’d scour the internet to be able to re-watch it. But since the end of high school my feelings on the show have definitely matured, especially in regards to how the show portrays OCD.
As the coronavirus has spread around the globe into a major pandemic, so too has a global panic surrounding the potential ramifications of the virus, from personal implications to the deleterious effects it could have on the economy. Goldman Sachs has projected zero growth for the American economy in the second quarter and, until recently, Chinese manufacturing was at a near-standstill. Economic effects are being felt especially hard in the manufacturing, travel, and services sectors.
Fordham University’s Army ROTC program produces the future leaders of America and the world, and Fordham’s program consistently ranks among the top Army ROTC programs in the nation in terms of active duty selectment and other competitive factors
The swimming pool is a powerful mechanism for healing, reflection, and peace. When I think about the pool I can’t help but sing “these are a few of my favorite things…” from The Sound of Music. Just as the young postulant Maria remembers “raindrops on roses” and “bright copper kettles… when the dog bites, when the bee stings, when [she’s] feeling sad,” I remember the swimming pool when the midterms come, when the sleep deprivation hits, or when I need a break.